Church says gay teacher fired by Miami Catholic school

Church says gay teacher fired by Miami Catholic school
Openly gay teacher fired after posting wedding pictures on social media
nJocelyn Morffi and Natasha Hass had booked the Key Largo Lighthouse estate for three days starting Feb. 2, turning their wedding day into a wedding weekend.

They had a welcome bash at the Florida wedding venue on Friday, a goodbye barbecue on Sunday and their seaside nuptials in between.

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Openly gay teacher fired after posting wedding pictures on social media

The women relayed important messages to their loved ones through their wedding website: Wear semiformal attire, contribute to the honeymoon fund instead of buying gifts and, of course, use the hashtag #MorffiHassTheKeys.

Openly gay teacher fired from Miami Catholic school after… – WPLG Local 10

Morffi’s messages were more somber a few days later. On Instagram, she explained to family, friends and anyone else who wondered why she hadn’t showed up at Miami’s Sts. Peter and Paul Catholic School, where she had been a first-grade teacher for seven years.

“This weekend I married the love of my life and unfortunately I was terminated from my job as a result,” she wrote. “In their eyes I’m not the right kind of Catholic for my choice in partner.”

Parents learned of the firing in a letter from the school’s principal on Thursday evening that did not give a reason for the decision, according to Miami-area news reports.

“As a teacher in a Catholic school their responsibility is partly for the spiritual growth of the children,” Agosta said. “One has to understand that in any corporation, institution or organization there are policies and procedures and teachings and traditions that are adhered to. If something along the way does not continue to stay within that contract, then we have no other choice.”

It said only that “a difficult and necessary decision” had been made regarding Morffi, but it didn’t provide details. “She is no longer teaching at our school,” the letter said.

“I think it’s shocking that in this day and age this continues to happen in South Florida,” said Tony Lima, executive director of the South Florida LGBT rights group SAVE. “It’s important to continue educating the community that this kind of stuff happens in this day and age. But it’s even more important to pass comprehensive statewide protections.”

It said students’ education wouldn’t be disrupted and asked parents “for your continued prayers” for the school.

Judge backs California bakery’s refusal to make same-sex wedding cake, citing ‘artistic expression’

Lake Ajay Village resident Stacy Ford talks about the proposed routes for the Osceola Parkway extension that she and her neighbors are fighting because of the impact it could have on their neighborhood, Friday, Feb. 9, 2018. (Joe Burbank/Orlando Sentinel)

Florida Catholic school fires teacher after same-sex marriage

Instead, about a dozen angry parents showed up at the school the next day, demanding an explanation and speaking to gathered news cameras.

“We were extremely livid. They treated her like a criminal, they didn’t even let her get her things out of her classroom,” Cintia Cini, whose child was in Morffi’s class, told the Miami Herald. Cini and other parents said they didn’t know or care about Morffi’s sexual orientation.

“Our only concern was the way she was with our children, the way she taught our children and this woman by far was one of the best teachers out there.”

Catholic School Parents Fight Lesbian Teacher’s Firing. Here’s Why That’s Good.

For Morffi, who couldn’t be reached for comment, the firing was the result of a one-two punch from a religious institution that has drawn a line in the sand against same-sex marriage and a county that doesn’t forbid religious institutions from terminating employees who come out as gay or lesbian.

In April 2014, after a judge in Florida lifted the state’s ban on same-sex marriage, Archbishop Thomas Wenski, who oversees Miami’s Catholic archdiocese, sent a message to all employees, according to the Religion News Service.

Openly gay teacher fired after posting wedding pictures on social media
Openly gay teacher fired after posting wedding pictures on social media

It said every person employed by the church – regardless of whether that person is a practicing Catholic – is expected to abide by Catholic teaching, including the church’s opposition to same-sex marriage.

The letter said employees who didn’t obey could be punished, even terminated, for such activities “even if it occurs outside the normal working day and outside the strict confines of work performed by the employee for the Archdiocese.”

It also included wording that many likened to a don’t-ask-don’t-tell policy governing social media use:

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“Employees should exercise discretion when posting on social media sites, and note that online activity indicative of prohibitive behaviors may subject an employee to disciplinary action or termination.”

Rep. David Richardson, a Democrat from Miami Beach and the first openly gay member of the Florida House, told Politico that many “may be surprised to learn that you can be fired from your employment not just because of gay marriage but also because you’re gay.”

The state’s discrimination law doesn’t cover sexual orientation. A bill by Richardson, HB 347, would ban workplace discrimination based on sexual orientation, but it has repeatedly stalled in the Senate.

In a letter to parents, Principal Carlota Morales called it a “difficult and necessary” decision. Nearly a dozen parents who had children in Morffi’s class came to the school to protest her firing. The parents called her a “great teacher” and said they were aware that she is openly gay and that it made no difference.

Miami-Dade County has an ordinance that prevents discrimination based on sexual orientation, but it makes an exception for religious institutions.

Mary Ross Agosta, a spokeswoman for the archdiocese, said although Morffi was well-liked, she was fired for violating her contract.

Jocelyn Morffi taught first grade at Saints Peter and Paul Catholic School in Miami for seven years. Last weekend, she married her girlfriend and posted pictures of the ceremony to Facebook. On Thursday, Morffi was fired.

Lesbian teacher sacked from Catholic school for marrying girlfriend

“Any Catholic teacher who signs a contract with the Archdiocese of Miami is acknowledging that policies and procedures will be followed and will abide by the teachings and traditions of the Catholic Church,” the spokeswoman said in a statement emailed to The Washington Post.

A spokesperson for the Archdiocese of Miami told WPLG Morffi “broke the contract she signed when she began teaching at a Catholic school.” Her contract contained a moral turpitude clause.

Now, parents at Sts. Peter and Paul Catholic School say they are fighting for the reinstatement of a woman who didn’t just teach their children to read and right, but also ran a volunteer organization called #teachHope70x7 that enlisted students to distribute meals to the homeless on weekends.

“This weekend, I married the love of my life and, unfortunately, I was terminated from my job as a result. In their eyes, I’m not the right kind of Catholic for my choice of partner. “

“We were completely outraged, all of the parents,” Samantha Mills, whose child was in Morffi’s class last year, told the Herald.

MIAMI, FL (WCMH) — Some parents are speaking out after a popular first-grade teacher was fired after she posted pictures of her same-sex wedding on social media.

“This teacher in particular has made such a contribution to the school. She never imposes her personal beliefs on others. She just does everything in love.”

Openly gay teacher fired from Miami Catholic school after... - WPLG Local 10
Openly gay teacher fired from Miami Catholic school after… – WPLG Local 10

Miami Catholic School Fires Gay Teacher After Marrying

MIAMI, FL (WCMH) — Some parents are speaking out after a popular first grade teacher was fired after she posted pictures of her same-sex wedding on social media.

Jocelyn Morffi taught first grade at Saints Peter and Paul Catholic School in Miami for seven years. Last weekend, she married her girlfriend and posted pictures of the ceremony to Facebook. On Thursday, Morffi was fired.

Catholic school fires gay first-grade teacher after she marries her partner

In a letter to parents, Principal Carlota Morales called it a “difficult and necessary” decision. Nearly a dozen parents who had children in Morffi’s class came to the school to protest her firing. The parents called her a “great teacher” and said they were aware that she is openly gay and that it made no difference.

Carlota E. Morales, the principal at Saints Peter and Paul Catholic School, sent a letter home to parents saying the firing of first-grade teacher Jocelyn Morffi was a “difficult and necessary decision,” ABC 10 reports.
This teacher married her girlfriend. Then she was fired by a Miami Catholic school.
This teacher married her girlfriend. Then she was fired by a Miami Catholic school.

Teacher fired for sharing wedding photos online

“I’m upset,” parent Christina Lopez told WPLG. “The way they handled this was just unbelievable.”

“What she does at home, that’s none of our concern,” said Ricardo Oviedo, another parent of a child in Morffi’s class. “The fact is, she maintained a high moral standard at school and was inscribing in our kids a sense of community and love.”

Several parents said after meeting with the school administration, they still don’t have a satisfactory explanation for why Morffi was fired.

“You know, to be a Catholic, you’re taught to be forgiving. But if you’re gay, forget about it,” said parent Cynthia Cini. “But love is love.”

Lesbian teacher is SACKED from her Catholic school the day after marrying her girlfriend

A spokesperson for the Archdiocese of Miami told WPLG Morffi “broke the contract she signed when she began teaching at a Catholic school.” Her contract contained a moral turpitude clause.

Morffi’s attorney told WPLG they are considering the next legal steps they can take.

Catholic school teacher fired for marrying her girlfriend.

Morffi posted a brief statement to Facebook on Friday addressing the issue:

Catholic School Teacher Fired After Marrying Love Of Her Life–A Woman

“This weekend, I married the love of my life and, unfortunately, I was terminated from my job as a result. In their eyes, I’m not the right kind of Catholic for my choice of partner. “

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Teacher Loses Her Catholic School Job After Marrying Female Partner

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